UK brokers agree that MGA growth a certainty: a closer look at Insurance Times MGA survey results

The Insurance Times RatedByBrokers survey results came out towards the end of last year. It contained a wealth of insight into how brokers and MGAs interact. 57% of brokers surveyed believed that the MGA market will grow over the next few months. 22% thought it definitely would. If brokers, the people at the heart of insurance sales, are convinced that MGAs are going to continue playing a key part in the market then chances are they will. This article digs into the survey results to find out more about MGA growth, other key trends in UK insurance and how FloodFlash got on.

The survey takes in views from across the SME and mid-corporate broking landscape. The results represent a diverse range of insurance specialists across the country, including network and non-network brokers. For a full look at the survey results, visit the Insurance Times website (access required). Without further ado, let’s get stuck in…

General market feedback

Coping with COVID

If MGA growth is certain, it is because of their resilience. 89% of UK brokers surveyed thought MGAs had “coped well with service levels over the last 12 months” to a satisfactory degree or better. This is encouraging given the ongoing turbulence created by the pandemic. Unfortunately, whilst MGAs have weathered the disruption throughout 2021, brokers have been less fortunate. Only 19% of brokers surveyed said that their brokerages has not suffered disruption as a result of COVID-19.

MGAs stayed at a high level of service despite COVID-19
MGAs managed to cope well during the pandemic, providing a good service throughout the disruption according to UK brokers.

What brokers want

When asked for a wishlist for future MGA investment, brokers were demanding on behalf of their customers. The requirements ranged from better access to quotes via APIs, more diverse ranges to include cyber and fleet products as well as improvements in the fundamentals like slicker software systems, simpler documentation and greater appetites to write business.

Broker capacity concern

One key area of the survey concentrated on MGA capacity. The hardening market had been further upset by the pandemic. These pressures were reflected in broker attitudes. 37% of brokers reported that they were very or extremely concerned with the prospect of MGAs losing capacity. A further 39% were moderately concerned.

It makes sense that having access to secure capacity is important to brokers. Capacity providers provide the lifeline that allows MGAs to write insurance. Without it, an MGA ceases to function. If an MGA were to lose capacity, then brokers can stand to lost out on business, making last year’s cover recommendation seem like misplaced wisdom.

For FloodFlash, capacity security has always been high on the agenda. Last Autumn we were delighted to announce our new partnership with Munich Re. This landmark deal will serve to bolster our appetite as well as improve our ability to innovate in the future. So FloodFlash brokers can put their concerns to rest.

FloodFlash specific feedback

The general feedback about FloodFlash suggests that we meet many of the brokers’ needs expressed elsewhere in the survey. This is one of the key reasons we were awarded 5 stars in our first appearance in the survey. Here are a few of the highlight comments:

  • “The Floodflash quote system is one of the quickest and easiest to use on the market”
  • “Using FloodFlash was seamless”
  • “FF were able to solve a major issue for client when insurer removed flood cover. Took time to speak to client and explain how product works and responds in the event of a flood”
Another validation of parametric insurance: FloodFlash brokers and clients share feedback after Storm Ciara in 2019

FloodFlash service feedback

One of the key take-outs from the survey that indicated growth in MGAs is the idea of great MGA service. 54% of brokers thoughts MGAs are good at adapting to changing customer needs. This validates Brent Jackson’s opinion, shared with the Insurance Times after the survey, that MGA flexibility gives them a key advantage over others in the market.

If you had asked [what MGAs’ biggest challenge would be] at the beginning of 2020, very few people would have answered a pandemic that turned the world upside down. The biggest challenge for the future is likely to be something that we don’t anticipate. One of the key benefits of being an MGA is that you are agile enough to react to uncertainty better than many other businesses in the market.

Brent Jackson, talking to the Insurance Times back in December

Within the theme of flexibility, two themes emerged: flexibility in service levels and flexibility of product. We’re proud to say that FloodFlash came out well from both.

Service level performance

From a FloodFlash perspective – we were pleased that broker feedback matched our growth as an MGA. The comments fell into a few key categories. Here are some of the the choice comments on FloodFlash underwriting and getting a quote:

  • “Good service and flexible underwriting”
  • “Excellent service from the team and easy to use quote system”

Here are a few that jumped out regarding our service levels:

  • “Great engagement, service and responsiveness”
  • “The service and speed was fabulous in placing the business”
  • “Knowledgeable staff and flexible underwriting”

On MGA flexibility, brokers had the following comments for FloodFlash:

  • “They are a great MGA, they are fast, agile and adaptable and also help their clients”
  • “Flexible and much needed insurance protection for the flood risks”
  • “They have been responsive to a new idea and strategy we have as a company, working together”

There are many more comments in this category so we couldn’t be prouder of the ace work that Brent and the Broker Success Team do as the frontline of our service efforts.

FloodFlash pick up the MGA of the Year awards a the MGAA Awards
Some of the team at the heart of our service: Broker Success Exec Ola Raji (c-l) and Commercial Director Brent Jackson (c-r) picking up an award in 2021 at the MGAA Awards.

FloodFlash product performance

The product feedback section casts light on what happens behind the scenes. For FloodFlash a whole cast of characters contributes, from those involved in our pricing and analytics to those that design, manage and develop our cloud-based underwriting platform. We’re equally proud of all of them given the comments:

  • The FloodFlash product is an excellent alternative to the traditional methods of providing cover for flood especially for businesses that have previously found it difficult or expensive to purchase this cover”
  • “Rapid claims service
  • “Great product”
  • “Realistic on renewals”

Feedback welcome

If you contributed to the survey – thank you! It’s great to see brokers appraise growth in the MGA market and get a sense of how we’re performing alongside our peers. We also enjoyed seeing the feedback such as one broker requesting that we consider domestic alongside commercial markets.

We will keep an eye out on the market and look closer when that might be a viable addition to our services. In the mean time, if you have read this and thought of something we could do better, email and yours could be the next best thing in parametric insurance.

To find out more about more about our record-breaking flood insurance visit our homepage.